Dream of:29 June 1999 (3) "Unshared Feelings"
While visiting the Gay Street House, I was surprised to discover a law office had been set up on the ground floor. A young lawyer (probably in his late 20s) was in charge of the office, and working for him was an attractive female lawyer (about the same age). The offices were well-arranged, impressively highlighted by the resplendent hardwood floors. I seemed to have some memory of somehow being connected with these lawyers, and I found a desk in the room on the Eighth Street side which I seemed to remember as belonging to me. Apparently if I wanted to practice law, all was ready and waiting for me, and I simply needed to sit down and begin. I even overheard the lawyer-in-charge talking to someone on a phone, explaining how I could work as competently as anyone in a large law firm. I was definitely tempted, especially since the female lawyer was so enticing.
As I looked outside the windows toward Eighth Street, I noticed several dogs running loose on the sidewalks and in the street. Fearing one might get hit by a car, I stepped out to see what was going on and saw perhaps 20 dogs running around. I walked down the steps to the sidewalk, but quickly turned around and raced back up the steps when I realized a black bear was among the dogs. Back on the porch, however, when I saw that I had made a mistake, and that the bear was simply a large dog, I walked back down to the dogs.
Although a couple people were with the dogs, the people had clearly lost control of the dogs. Two dogs began fighting, and soon a third dog jumped in. All three dogs were holding onto each other with their teeth dug in, possibly causing serious injury. I ran up to the dogs, thinking we might be able to grab their rear legs and hold the legs off the ground. I had read that this was a good method to break up a dog fight. Just as I reached them, however, all the dogs broke up, and stepped back from each other. One dog even walked up to me. He was dark brown, burly and low-built.
As the owners attempted to round up the dogs, a thin man (probably in his late 50s) walked up to me and began talking. He pointed up to the second story of the House at some yellow paint which had been painted over a section of the white walls and trim. He said he had done the painting. I thought the paint job was ghastly, but I didn't say so to him. After all, I reflected, my father had sold the House, and we no longer had any say about what happened to it.
I was sad that my father no longer owned the Gay Street House. It would have been interesting to completely restore the House and modernize it. I could even imagine adding a continually flowing fountain to the front yard, and installing a burglar alarm system throughout the entire House.
I turned away from the man and walked back inside, into the large middle room on the Gay Street side, and sat down on a couch. My father was sitting in a chair just to my right. When I mentioned that someone had painted the yellow on the House, he said he already knew about that, and he continued to explain that the man with whom I had spoken was a renter who lived in one of the upstairs room. My father said the man had used the yellow paint because the paint was manufactured by a corporation in which the man had bought a large amount of stock. My father added that the stock value had gone down and that the man had "lost a fortune."
As we sat, I picked up a thick hard-bound dictionary, and began looking up a word which I had recently come across in either Dante's Divine Comedy or Goethe's Faust. As soon as I had found the word and read its meaning, a flood of emotion swept over me. I could feel tears forming in my eyes, and I raised my right hand in front of my face so my father wouldn't see the tears.
I had suddenly realized just how important Dante and Goethe had become to me. Although the Divine Comedy and Faust were difficult to understand, they were no longer impenetrable. In fact, I now understood I couldn't have comprehended them before now, because I had needed so much preparation in order to grasp them. Now these works were more than just books to me, they were actually somehow part of me. What stunned me, however, was the realization that I also must write something. I clearly shared something with Dante and Goethe, inasmuch as like they, I also must write a meritorious book.
The intense joy of this emotional revelation was somewhat offset by the realization that my father would never be able to share my feelings. He would never read Dante or Goethe, and if he did, he wouldn't have the background to understand them. He would never understand what I was feeling, and my role in life. He would also probably not understand why all this made tears come to my eyes. I was saddened that I couldn't share this with him, but at the same time, I was beginning to feel as if I didn't need to hide my tears. If he didn't understand the tears, perhaps he could still at least accept them.
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